Anti-Vax Attacks

Childhood vaccinations have been at the centre of a mega-controversy for more than a decade now due to claims that they sometimes cause the onset of autism in youngsters. The academic foundation stone of this controversy is a paper by former surgeon Andrew Wakefield published in the premier medical journal, the Lancet, in 1998. However, after an inquiry by the British General Medical Council, in early 2010 the journal retracted the paper, and Wakefield was struck-off the Medical Register in May 2010.

But a new investigation by journalist Brian Deer, published in the British medical journal BMJ, goes much further with its allegations:

An investigation published by the British medical journal BMJ concludes the study's author, Dr. Andrew Wakefield, misrepresented or altered the medical histories of all 12 of the patients whose cases formed the basis of the 1998 study -- and that there was "no doubt" Wakefield was responsible.

"It's one thing to have a bad study, a study full of error, and for the authors then to admit that they made errors," Fiona Godlee, BMJ's editor-in-chief, told CNN. "But in this case, we have a very different picture of what seems to be a deliberate attempt to create an impression that there was a link by falsifying the data."

Britain stripped Wakefield of his medical license in May. "Meanwhile, the damage to public health continues, fueled by unbalanced media reporting and an ineffective response from government, researchers, journals and the medical profession," BMJ states in an editorial accompanying the work.

It's not a subject I have taken much interest in personally, and so don't know a lot about it and have no comment myself. Although when my children were offered vaccination, and the possible risk was mentioned, from the reading I did on the subject I remember my thoughts were simply along the lines of "a possible risk versus very real risks known to be present and waiting in the environment". To me, there is little doubting the overall good that vaccinations have done for humanity at this stage in history - though I am more than happy to hear arguments against in any (respectable) form, having seen first hand the sometimes blinding power of consensus thinking.

You can read Deer's new investigative article at the BMJ website.

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Delaiah's picture
Member since:
1 May 2004
Last activity:
11 hours 39 min

I think the greater part of the problem comes with the presence of heavy metals in the vaccines, combined with an increasing propensity for medical staff to administer multiple vaccines at once or in a compressed timeframe. When we were younger, the shots were spread out over weeks or months. Remember that a single new "green" light bulb contains enough mercury to be considered hazardous waste. Injecting mercury directly into a child has to become dangerous at some concentration.

That said, I am not sure that sufficient information exists to establish a safe level or tolerance. Wakefield's study appears far too small to actually draw conclusions even if it was conducted in an unimpeachable manner. The pharmaceutical industry, on the other hand, may have no incentive to actually examine the issue in an unbiased way. A proper scientific investigation is certainly in order to establish whether or not there is a problem and how to correct it. A permanently impaired child that cannot care for themself or a child dead/crippled by disease is an unacceptable choice if it can be prevented.

Redoubt's picture
Member since:
14 July 2008
Last activity:
2 years 16 weeks

"Although when my children were offered vaccination, and the possible risk was mentioned, from the reading I did on the subject I remember my thoughts were simply along the lines of "a possible risk versus very real risks known to be present and waiting in the environment". To me, there is little doubting the overall good that vaccinations have done for humanity at this stage in history - though I am more than happy to hear arguments against in any (respectable) form, having seen first hand the sometimes blinding power of consensus thinking."

As both a former kid who was vaccinated and a parent of vaccinated children, I can relate to your views. Between the smallpox vacs we got at one time (back in the late 50s/early 60s) in school, the 6,537,899 individual shots I got while in the army... and those flu vacs since, I cannot ever remember once becoming ill from the vaccine itself.

But then later, as a parent, I was torn on the subject because I was less about my own personal experiences and more into those ee-ville vaccine-givers. Oddly enough, my distrust of the 'establishment' was able to kick down an otherwise very sound and secure parental door.

Anyway, they did get all their shots and without incident.

They are all grown now with kids of their own... and like daddy, they are now questioning whether to have my grandyounguns vaccinated.

I told them not to ask me that question without coming for dinner and with enough time to hear the whole story... no more than a full weekend.

"The power of accurate observation is frequently called cynicism by those who don't have it."

Gwedd's picture
Member since:
8 April 2006
Last activity:
13 hours 52 sec

I had all the childhood vaccines, including some like smallpox than aren't given anymore.

Then the Navy got their hands on me and upped the ante several-fold.

Now my own kids have had them.

Personally, after reading about the fact that he only had 12 subjects in his study, I'd like to see this "doctor" dragged to the nearest lamp post and hanged by his own intestines.

This "doctor" had an agenda, and was enabled by folks with similar agendas and Lord knows how many young children died or were sickened because their parents bought into his Luddite fears.

12 subjects! Where was the peer-review when this travesty of science was submitted for publication?

Ah well....... enough of a rant for today. I need to keep my blood pressure in check. :)

Respects,
Gwedd

thefloppy1's picture
Member since:
1 May 2004
Last activity:
2 weeks 5 hours

the percentage of children effected by vaccines is very small when you take the overall numbers. BUT, would all your comments be the same if it were your child that became autistic because of an injection of mercury.
Oral vaccine is the safest. It has no heavy metal to stimulate the immune system.

It's really a balancing act here; the percentage of deaths or diabilty by disease weighed against the percentage of death and disabilty from vaccine.

People who have lost a child to preventative disease are very loud in condoning vaccination. Whereas people who have lost a child to vaccination are very loud in condemning vaccination.

I personally condone some vaccination but not all and I especially condone oral vaccination as opposed to injection.

I only wish that all the evidence of both for and against was given freely and un-censored to people so their choses could be fully informed rather then being frightened into decisions which could change their lives forever in a very negative way.

"Life can be whatever you want it to be, as long as you do what your told."
LRF.